Adept Music Notation Solutions

Printing Tips
for Nightingale X

Nightingale is designed to produce PostScript printing of the highest quality using a PostScript-compatible printer at 300 dots per inch (DPI) resolution or above. As you position a symbol on the screen in Nightingale, it is assigned values for its "x" and "y" position. When the score is printed, this position information is coupled with the very high quality PostScript information associated with each symbol. The result is very smooth and accurate printout of each symbol.

Nightingale comes with two PostScript fonts. Francis X. Mahoney's Briard font and Thomas Williams's BlueNotz font each have a screen and printer version of the font. Our screen version of the Sonata font is called Nightfonts 2000. The Printer PostScript version of the Sonata font (called 'Sonat') must be purchased separately, as we are not licensed to provide it. (See below for more information.)

The music font can be changed from within the 'File/Preferences/File Preferences' dialog to either Briard, Sonata, or BlueNotz.

Printing using PostScript files and Apple's Preview application to create a PDF file:
Printing on a PostScript capable printer will give engraver quality results with Nightingale. If you don't have a PostScript printer, the best alternative is to make a PDF file. Use the command in the file menu to save your Nightingale file as a PostScript or EPS file. In Panther and Tiger, you can then open this file in Apple's Preview program and save it as a PDF file, which you can then print. The results are very good and comparable to those you can get by printing straight to a PostScript printer.

Note that using the 'Save as PDF' button in the print dialog, as opposed to the directions above, gives a Non-PostScript result of a lower quality. (See the ' print.pdf' document.) However, this result can be improved by following the directions for Non-PostScript printing below. (See step 5.)

Non-PostScript printing straight from Nightingale's print dialog:
When you print with a non-PostScript printer, printed output is based on the 72 DPI resolution shown on the computer screen. Print quality at this resolution is substantially lower than when using PostScript. Any roughness or jagged lines shown on the screen will be reproduced exactly by your printer.

However, it is possible to "trick" your non-PostScript printer into receiving higher quality screen information. You can double the printing resolution to 144 DPI with the following method:

1. Save your score in its final form.
2. (optional) View your score at 100% and then print a "rough" copy, to get an idea of how the printed score will appear.
3. Go to the Page Setup command (under the File menu) and select a 50% print size. Then close the Page Setup dialog.
4. Zoom in to view your Nightingale score at 200% on the screen (go to the View menu and choose the "Enlarge" command).
5. Go to the Print command (under the File menu) and print the score while you are still viewing at 200%. (At this point, you can also use the 'Save as PDF' button in the Print Dialog to create a PDF file for printing.)
6. When finished printing, Choose the "Revert" command (in the File menu) to go back to the last saved version of your score (created in step 1 above).

Note: The foregoing 'trick' may work even better with page setup at %25, and view at %400.

WARNING: Changes made to the 'Reduce/Enlarge' field in Page Setup must be changed back to 100% once printing is finished and before any further editing is done to the score in order to avoid later complications.

Obtaining the Sonata PostScript Printer Font:
To obtain the PostScript version of the Sonata font, you'll need to purchase the Sonata package from Adobe. It's current price is $25.99. To find Sonata on the Adobe Website, go to Be sure to get the Macintosh version: the Windows version is not compatible. If you do purchase the package, DO NOT INSTALL THE SCREEN FONTS in the package. These will just be a duplicate of the NightFonts 2000 file we have supplied with Nightingale, except they will NOT include the special sizes we supply. Furthermore, installing a duplicate set of screen fonts may cause some confusion for the computer and/or printer when it is time to print.

The Sonata PostScript printer font must be placed inside the top level Library/Fonts Folder on your Mac's Hard Drive. It must be a version with a creation date of 1991 or newer in order to function properly with the Sonata screen font (NightFonts 2000) supplied with Nightingale.

Jagged Beams and Lower-Resolution Printers:
Jagged beams can be a problem with lower-resolution (say, 300 DPI or below) printers.

Nightingale has a default setting for beam angles of 25% of the angle between the ends of the stems of the notes being beamed. 25% is a standard choice used by many professional engravers, but if you are printing on a Non-PostScript printer, or a PostScript printer of only 300 DPI, you may feel dissatisfied with the jagged look of the beams. A setting of 80% is used as the default by other notation programs in order to reduce the jaggedness in printing, though this produces a more extreme beam angle than is usually desirable.

To change the default beam angle used in Nightingale:
1) Go to the File menu
2) Select the Preferences command
3) Choose Engraver Preferences from the Popup menu
4) Set the Relative Beam Slope to a new number (between zero and 100%)

If you have any questions or comments, please contact us.

2006 Adept Music Notation Solutions, Inc.
33 Riverdale Road, Yardley, PA 19067 USA; tel. 1(215)736-8237;

This page last updated 14 November, 2006.

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